Q. A friend of mine committed suicide. I believed he was a Christian. Will he go to hell?
Some people believe that a person who commits suicide cannot go to heaven. But there is no basis for this from the Scriptures.
To commit suicide is to commit a grave error, but it is not the sin of blaspheming against the Holy Spirit (see earlier post). The man who committed suicide certainly did so in “unbelief,” meaning he did not exercise faith in Christ at the time he committed suicide. It was a mistake. In fact, it was a very tragic mistake. But was it so tragic that God could not forgive it?
Speaking of the sheer magnitude of errors that people have made in the Bible, there are some that are far greater (in my opinion) than the sin of committing suicide, in which the Lord has indeed forgiven the man. Think of Ahab, whom the Lord forgave. Think of Manasseh, who sacrificed his own son, whom the Lord forgave. Ahab had a lot of blood on his hands, and so did Manasseh. The Lord forgave them both, when they humbled themselves.
It is incorrect and false theology to teach that the person who commits suicide cannot go to heaven. What they did was to fall into a momentary and likely very emotional lapse of judgment.
Christians sometimes make grave mistakes. If the man who committed suicide was truly a believer prior to his committing suicide, the fact that he committed suicide will not remove his salvation from him. Will the Lord be grieved over this sinful act that he committed? Yes, without question. Will the man lose out on some blessings that the Lord wanted to give to him? Yes, as well.
Was that good stewardship on the man’s part to commit suicide like that? No, that was very poor stewardship, indeed, to cut his life so very short like that, when God could have done so much more with it, had the man only abided in the Holy Spirit, exercising the fruits of the Holy Spirit which bring about true and lasting blessings for those who practice them. The fruits of the Holy Spirit are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. We would all do well to practice these on a daily basis.
“For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.” (2 Corinthians 5:10)